The third man door Graham Greene

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  • 17 augustus 2006
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The third man door Graham Greene
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The Third Man

Explanation Title:
Rollo Martins looked for a third man who is said to be involved bij the accident. They thought there was a third man, but there appeared not tob e a third man at all. Because Harry Lime didn’t die.

Graham Greene

Penquin Books 1971

Number of Pages:
120 pages.

At the beginning of the book, Martins discovers that his old friend Harry Lime, who he had not seen in several years, has been killed in an accident under mysterious circumstances just prior to Martins' arrival in Vienna. He finds that there was more to Lime than he knew and that he was accused of being a dealer in poor quality penicellin. Rollo Martins is told that Lime was struck by a truck while crossing a street. On several accounts, two of Lime's friends carried Lime's body off the street after the accident. All eyewitnesses to the accident happen to be friends or associates of Lime, including the driver. Martins' investigation leads to another eyewitness not associated with Lime who claims that there was a third man who helped carry Lime's body. It is this "third man", A somewhat more hypothetical interpretation is that Harry Lime is the "third man", because they could as well have used the accident to kill Harbin.

The story ends with the second funeral of Harry Lime. Collaway and Rollo Martins are walking down the long avenue of trees that led them to the tram entrance. Crabbin is still arguing with the British Council about Dexters expenses. He feels sorry for Crabbin, he feels pity for all of them.

Main Character:
Rollo Martins:
He is a writer, he writes with the name Buck Dexter and he’s friends with Harry Lime.He doesn’t believe the story of Harry death and tries to figure out what really happened.

Minor Characters:
Harry Lime:
He’s a criminal, who is searched by the police because he smugged bad penicillin. The story is about him. Afterwards he turned out to be the third man.

He’s a police officer, he is telling the story.

Cooler, Kurtz en Dr. Winkler:
They are the friends of Harry Lime.

Anna Smith:
She’s the ex-girlfriend of Harry Lime.

He is the neighbour of Harry.

Point of view:
I person

When Rollo Martins visits his best friend Harry Lime, he finds out that he died before he arrived. Everybody said it was an accident, but Rollo wanted to know more about it. He met a police officer called Colonel Cooper. Cooper told Rollo that his friend was in a big Racket. That’s why Rollo started to think how he died wasn’t an accident. He talks to some people and concludes he was murdered. He finds some friends and witnesses of the accident and talks with them one by one. Than he meats Chrowin, the neighbor of Harry Lime. Chrowin told Rollo that he had seen 3 men next to Harry Lime on the ground. But nobody knew who was that third man. They only knew that there was a doctor, and a friend of Harry Lime. When he has a meeting with Colonel Cooper, he says that Harry Lime was in a racket of penicillin. That was a medicine only for military hospitals. The big men saw money in it, and they started to dilute it with coloured water. But when they did this, it became poisonous. They started to give it to kids, but they all became mad, or even died. One day later, it seems that Harry Lime wasn’t dead, but the accident was to get the police of the back of Harry Lime. Than Rollo Martins didn’t want to find Harry anymore, he just wanted him to be arrested, for all those innocent children who got killed. He helps the police with arresting Harry and he had the death penalty. The third man was Harry Lime, and the body was exchanged with another.

Solving a mystery of an accident.

My opinion:
It was a reasonable book, a little detective story. But it wasn’t like any other detective story, because the person who’s thought to be dead, wasn’t really dead. Sometimes I couldn’t understand who was talking, that was a little disappointment, but I do think it’s a good story. There are a few turns that you will not expect: “You really believe it was Harry?”
Whe he stopt at the kiosk. “You see, he passed behind here and simply vanished into the ground.”


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